The Hudson David McNeel Foundation

JULY Monthly Feature: Airlift Northwest

What do helicopters, airplanes and lear jets have in common with the Hudson David McNeel Foundation’s mission?  When you think about premature babies in the NICU, one wouldn’t immediately associate air transport, however, this can often be the very first lifeline at one’s chance of survival.

Airlift Northwest is a not-for-profit entity of UW Medicine and is the premier air medical transport service in the Pacific Northwest and Southeast Alaska.  They operate 24/7, 365 days a year offering exceptional patient and critical care transport service across Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho.

With 7 bases strategically located around the Puget Sound, they can rapidly deploy emergency flight crews staffed with medical expertise, technology and equipment.  They transport over 3,600 patients every year.  In the past two years, 16% of flights were pediatric cases, of which 242 were neonatal patients and high-risk pregnant mothers.  For transporting premature babies, flights are equipped with neonatal isolette incubators.

Warren and Heather recently had the privilege of visiting Boeing Field and touring some of Airlift Northwest’s fleet and the isolette incubators that transport premature babies.  Flying, even in the most adverse conditions, to transport those in greatest need is the focus of this amazing team. Airlift Northwest is the crucial link between medical providers and patients, some of which are only hours old.

For the Hudson David McNeel Foundation, supporting premature babies and their families not only spans top notch medical care and equipment in the NICU, but also the transport of the most delicate nature.  Imagine a child being born early, in need of immediate life saving support during a snowstorm where first responders cannot navigate the roads.  Or perhaps while on vacation, a pregnant woman enjoying a family hike suddenly goes into labor on a mountainside trailhead.  Although these are hard situations to think about, the reality is that they DO happen and thankfully there are life-saving and critical means of getting patients to the highest quality of care, given any situation.

Please join us in the flight to help premature babies, from the moment they are born to the time they are discharged.  There are so many variables, so many moving parts to caring for such a delicate life, and it’s our goal to support as many areas as we can.  Will you join us?  Your donation is tax deductible and 100% is directed to the mission of the Hudson David McNeel Foundation.